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#STEMStories: Camille, Mechanical Engineering Student, USA

  1. Say hi :) who are you what do you do?

Hello, my name is Camille Eddy and I am a Mechanical Engineering Student and veteran Silicon Valley Intern

  1. How did you arrive at this career? Was it always something you knew you wanted to do?

I decided I wanted to be an astronaut when I was 12 and engineering was one of the paths you could take to be an astronaut. I was inspired by people like Mae Jemison, the first Black female astronaut in space, and Barbara Morgan the first teacher in space and my mentor, who were pioneers for what astronauts could be.

  1. What about your job makes you jump out of bed in the morning, especially on those cold, dark mornings?

I know that I bring a lot of uniqueness and diversity to the teams I am on. My childhood and my journey through school are different from others and I like bringing new perspectives to old ideas. Sometimes even just showing up to a meeting or class is enough to send shock waves. That can be a burden or a blessing. But most days I take that as a blessing. I try to be confident and be myself wherever I go.

  1. What is your personal cure for stress or how do you raise your spirits in times of doubt? Can you share a Story?

I got a very unpleasant message in my inbox the other day. This person raised up in me some doubt if I had made the right decision to move to a new community. This made me a little angry because it wasn’t the first time someone had doubted me in this way. When I got home a package was waiting for me and it was a book from a friend and they had written a very encouraging note. I knew this was a sign to sit down and appreciate the people in my life who support me. I sent my friend a message to tell them what had happened earlier and of course, they understood and listened to me. Let your friends help you! Reach out to others and it will help you get back on track faster and you can be making more forward progress!

  1. Who is your role model? If no one, any thoughts on this?

My current role models are my academic peers. I always have more than one and learning how to learn is something I can learn to be better at through many examples. I tend to silo myself based on what I am doing at the time. Right now, in the school year, it is time to be an even better student than last year. When I go to my next internship I will shift and take on 2 or 3 new role models and be a better intern than the last year!

  1. What advice would you give to your 18 year old self?

If you want to make your own path don’t let anything get in the way of you exploring as many different communities as possible. I wish I did even more networking and making new friends when I was 18. The networking I did later really helped me be who I am today. I can’t imagine if I had been this focused and open as an 18 year old how much different and better it could be.

  1. Top 3 tips for girls starting out in STEM?
    1. Try something new every week
    2. See if you can master one of those things (especially small projects because you can learn a LOT versus a few things at time)
    3. Let everyone know the new things you have been learning about and trying. And don’t be afraid if that is a lot of different things.
  1.  How do you measure your success?

I measure success by how well I am able to move in and out of different projects. I think mastery of MANY things is the most important skill I could have. I don’t seek to specialize in any one things because I am still young and I haven’t settled on one job over another. If I do get a job that is specialized, I want that to be the most intriguing, high minded specialty ever, like an astronaut!

  1.  Where can we find out more about your work?

You can watch this video on the robotics team at HP: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIeuWoB9wzg

This was my very first internship and it shows the amazing team dynamic and learning I was afforded during this internship.

  1. Are you social? Will you share your Twitter handle, or LinkedIn profile, or Facebook so that young women can connect with you?

Twitter: @nikkymill

Instagram: @nikkymill

LinkdIn:  camilleeddy